In ten billion years the universe will double in size

28 May 2022

The Hubble constant expresses the rate at which the universe is expanding. The problem is though, no one has been able to nail down a precise value for the constant. That is, until now.

When the Hubble Space Telescope was launched in 1990 the universe’s expansion rate was so uncertain that its age might only be 8 billion years or as great as 20 billion years. After 30 years of meticulous work using the Hubble telescope’s extraordinary observing power, numerous teams of astronomers have narrowed the expansion rate to a precision of just over 1%. This can be used to predict that the universe will double in size in 10 billion years.

That’s mind blowing. To say the least. The already enormous cosmos will one day be twice its present size. Too bad no one here today will be around to see it. But what does it matter anyway? Well, you’d be surprised. Given some two point two million new books are published every year, one can only imagine how many more publications there’ll be in ten billion years’ time.

With a much larger universe by then, it’s comforting to know there will be space to put them somewhere…